Backyard Adventureland: Part II – Installing Madame Pele (It’s lit, fam!)

After painting Pele’s front side, I applied a coat of exterior brown spray paint to her back half, and 3 coats of polyurethane on each side. She’s braced on the back with garden stakes, and has one stake under each foot. About 6″ directly behind her is a tiki torch to take advantage of forced perspective to make her volcano hat come to life (and hopefully ward off some mosquitos.) She’s nestled in a local-climate friendly flowering bush (plumbago) and I think she looks right at home.

Next up is Rongo, the “god of agriculture” who will grace the area where our vegetable container garden resides. The wood is purchased and an image is gridded out, just need to transfer, cut, paint, seal, and he’ll be ready to go (that’s going to take a couple weeks!)

I have officially gone DIS-nuts.

As I lay my sweet, precious, incredibly inquisitive and intelligent two and a half year old down to bed last night for the tenth time, she proved 100% why I am currently a total Disney nut. She looked up at me, the pale green glow of her nightlight reflecting in her cute little eyes, and said (for the eighth time): “Daddy, sing me the Tiki Tiki Tiki Room song one more time before I go to sleep.” So I did. (See the clip below if you don’t know what I’m talking about)

It’s kind of funny how the once “tourist attractions are no good for me” haughty traveler has turned into the “DREAM BIG, PRINCESS” daddy of today. It probably started at about the same time we started letting babyPrimate watch TV. Just a show here, a clip there, etc. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is one of the most kid-accessible TV shows I’ve ever seen. And I don’t even mind watching it, because she LOVES it, she learns from it, and seriously, who doesn’t love Mickey? mommyPrimate put together the absolute best two-year-old’s birthday party on the planet with a Minnie’s Bow-Tique theme. So when our Christmas plans to meet family in New Orleans fell through, and the suggested replacement was a week in Orlando in March we jumped on that faster than a fat kid on a cupcake.

The morning we left, mommyPrimate and I packed up the car very quietly, and when we were ready to go we opened babyPrimate’s bedroom door and she jumped up SUPER fast and said “WE’RE GOING AT DISNEYWORLD.” That was the first super magic moment Disney brought me since I was a 5 year old, AND THEY DIDN’T EVEN HAVE TO DO ANY OF IT. So we drove to Orlando. No drama from the little mama in the car.

The trip to Disney World itself was magical. When you go as an adult with just another adult, it’s a WHOLE lot of fun. You kinda feel like a kid again. When you go with your own kid, and everything is real to them, well, it’s kinda real to you, too. For example, when she met Minnie Mouse, she met Minnie Mouse. It was real to her. As real as anything. And because of the joy that just overflowed from her in the biggest way, I’ve turned into a Disney nut. I’m just not going to miss something that might make my babyPrimate that happy again.

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…when you hide a Mickey in your kid's cinnamon roll…

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So things like this keep happening. Hidden Mickeys keep appearing around the house. We talk about princesses all the time (especially the badass feminist ones like Moana.) We’ve planted tons of flowers out of inspiration from Epcot, and I’m keeping the fridge stocked with Schöfferhofer. I. Love. It.


Learning to bake with daddyPrimate: Yiaourtopita (Greek Yogurt Cake)


Continuing my why wasn’t I born Greek baking saga was pretty easy. Baklava was a huge success, family and coworkers were duly impressed. It was delicious. While my mother-in-law was in town we had planned to grill, but that was canceled by a torrential downpour. One thing that didn’t get cancelled was my Greek Yogurt Cake, or apparently in greek, Yiaourtopita.

This cake was interesting. The recipe I used from was fairly straightforward, but it called for self-rising flour and baking powder. I thought the two didn’t go together, but whatever. Per the recipe I started out by whipping egg whites into a meringue, then I folded in the dry ingredients, set it in a cake tin, and popped it in the oven.

When I was done it popped right out of the tin, and cooled off. It was dense, like a pound cake (another english-name for this cake is Greek yogurt pound cake apparently) and was a well balanced sweet but not too sweet. The lemon and orange zest gave it a nice fresh scent.


Now, if you’re less interested in the cake than in the continuing saga of my Greek obsession, you’d be amused to know that we’re redoing the front yard. While shopping for flowers for our new flower bed, I found a 5′ tall or bigger statue of Atlas holding up the sky. The sky was a planter box. I was willing to drop the $$$ to buy this thing, but mommyPrimate (who is wise and responsible) managed to distract me away from it with her fine understanding of distraction.

Tis the season to lie to yourself.

It’s January, and every January a large portion of the American populace says “this is the year I will get in shape.”


Well, I’ve gotten in shape before, recently gotten out of shape, and a few months ago I started getting back into shape. I run a few nights a week, though I’ve taken the last couple of weeks off for the holidays. I plan on adding lifting back into the equation for the first time in a couple of years here in the next few days.

A lot of people fail, though. They start with the best of intentions and end up giving up. They haven’t learned the secret of fitness yet. Lie to yourself.


Talk to someone who runs long road races, like half-marathons and marathons. They’ll be all like, omg I love running! Running is the best thing in the world! You don’t need to take those anti-depressants anymore, just start running! Running will make all of your troubles go away! Bullshit.

Running hurts, being out of breath sucks, and there’s nothing intrinsically fun about it. Same with pretty much everything.

  1. Running: Not fun.
  2. Lifting: OK, but makes me puke sometimes.
  3. Yoga: Also OK, also makes me puke sometimes.
  4. Cross-training: Barf-city
  5. Cycling: Hurts the taint.
  6. Rollerblading: It’s not the 90’s anymore, but it hurt then.

The reason people don’t quit these endeavors is because they’re good enough at lying to themselves to make it believable.

It helps if you can lie to yourself and pretend greek yogurt with nuts and honey is just as delicious as a full English breakfast, or that spaghetti squash really is close enough to “pasta” to count (actually,spaghetti squash works in my book.)

Welcome 2016.

I don’t really remember New Year’s Eve last year. We had just had a baby a month earlier, we weren’t getting much sleep, and life was all about survival.

What a difference a year makes. Tonight we managed to watch a NYE countdown with our daughter. She totally didn’t get what was going on, but it doesn’t matter because it was Netflix’s Puffin Rock New Year’s Eve countdown. That shit was brilliant.

Anyway, I just started this blog as a replacement for my old blogs that all seem irrelevant to my life now.

The best one was the travel blog, you can see it here. That was all a long time ago, when we lived in Korea and traveled quite a lot.

The replacement was the oft-depressed sounding “food blog,” that you can see here.

I don’t want such a niche blog anymore. I want to write about whatever the hell I end up writing about.  A true creative outlet that might focus heavily on food and places I want to go, but could still be host to a haiku about farts.

Welcome to daddyPrimate, where the everevolvingprimate ended up after moving back to his hometown with his beautiful bride, getting a real job, and having a kid.

What I’m trying to say is…I’m back, wordpress…and this time I’m not going to take myself too seriously.